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Dealing with Demons
Devotee: Sometimes on sankirtana one may be preaching to a nonsense. How can one avoid losing tine's temper and blaspheming him?
Harikesa Swami: You have to understand what you are doing on sankirtana. Your purpose is not to defeat the opposing party. Your purpose is to get a book into the hand of the person you are talking to. If you think that the person is a nonsense and there is no question of him taking a book, you should quickly move on to the next person. You don't get involved in trying to defeat him. What is the use of trying to fight with someone on the street? You will only get agitated and fall into the mode of passion. Then, because you are disturbed, you will not be able to distribute anything to the next person.
Devotee: What should we do when demons harass us? Sometimes they even follow us if we change to another place.
Harikesa Swami: It's up to you. If you are a big guy, you might smash him in the nose — ultimately that is what a demon understands. But then you will get into trouble with the police, because he will go to them and complain. Or you can just threaten to hit him in the nose. Manidhara Prabhu was expert at dealing with demons. Sometimes he would fall down on the ground, take hold of their feet, and beg them to go somewhere else. He made them so amazed and embarrassed that they would do as he asked.